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He didn’t eat lunch for years, used to work in a factory all night: Kumar Kartikeya’s coach recalls struggles of MI’s mystery spinner

Kumar Kartikeya picked the wicket of Rajasthan Royals skipper Sanju Samson on the very first ball of his debut match.

Aakash Srivastava Author

Published on - 6 May 2022 3:48 pm

Aspiring cricketers endure a lot of struggles and go to any extent to make a name for themselves and prove their worth amidst competition of the highest degree in the country. One such player is Mumbai Indians’ Kumar Kartikeya Singh, who recently drew a lot of limelight after picking Rajasthan Royals’ skipper Sanju Samson on the very first ball of his debut match.

Eventually, Mumbai Indians registered their maiden victory in the tournament, and the debutant was applauded by many for his economical bowling in that match. The ‘mystery-bowler’ has overcome numerous hurdles in his life to reach where he is today. Kartikeya’s childhood coach Sanjay Bharadwaj, who trained Gautam Gambhir, recently revealed that the offspinner had missed his lunch for years to make his living.

In an interview with ESPNCricinfo, Bharadwaj revealed that he offered the bowler an on-site accommodation, and when someone gave him lunch there, the bowler burst into tears. “He then informed us that he hadn’t had lunch in years,” revealed the coach.

Kartikeya failed to get selected for Delhi’s team and was later sent to Madhya Pradesh, where he soon got picked in the state team. After a year, Bharadwaj revealed that he asked Kartikeya to come and train in his new academy in Bhopal, where he learned the art of wrist spin. The coach informed that the offspinner used to work hard to excel in his art. After coming from matches, he used to get the lights on and spend the next two-three hours in the nets. “He got obsessed with the game,” concluded Bharadwaj.

Although Mumbai Indians failed to qualify for the playoffs, they may try to be a party spoiler for many teams. Men in Blue will take on Gujarat Titans on Friday (May 6) at the iconic Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.

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